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Sherlock Holmes - Jude Law and Kelly Reilly interview

Sherlock Holmes

Interview by Rob Carnevale

JUDE Law and Kelly Reilly talk about some of the challenges of making Guy Ritchie’s Sherlock Holmes, including – in Kelly’s case – having to throw a glass of wine over Robert Downey Jr’s face and – in Jude’s – making Dr Watson a little more tougher than usual…

Q. Jude, how are the characters in this film different from what you’ve seen before, especially in the case of Watson?
Jude Law: When I was asked to get involved, Robert was already cast and Guy knew then that this was going to be a different take on the older films and it fascinated me. And obviously, not having to put on four stone and fool around putting my foot in a waste-paper basket [appealed]. I was being asked to play Watson with a bit more edge. What was intriguing was to go back to the books and realise just how much this ‘new’ re-discovery was in the source material. So, it was a happy juggle between Conan Doyle and revelling in all the accuracy that perhaps in the past we’d over-looked and also looking to the future and adding a new energy for an audience who might be discovering Sherlock Holmes for the first time.

Q. Kelly, how did you cope playing this character with Robert and Jude also there?
Kelly Reilly: It was very difficult, it was hell. I think Watson should have warned Mary before they went to dinner, I think he should have probably said: “He may be a bit tricky with you.”

Q. So, how satisfying was it throwing that glass of wine at Robert?
Kelly Reilly: It was my first day, on the first week of filming. So, I was terrified.

Q. How many times did you have to do it though?
Kelly Reilly: I can’t remember. I think I missed first time, so it was probably three or four times. But I think what’s nice about Mary is that she’s the woman behind the already good man and I think the fact that she can actually have a place in that relationship that isn’t the woman who wants him to stay at home… she does love him as much as Holmes does and wants him to go on and continue his adventures. But unfortunately Robert [as Sherlock] didn’t see it that way!

Q. When was your first introduction to Sherlock Holmes?
Kelly Reilly: I don’t remember exactly when it was, but I just know that it was in my childhood. I can’t really put my finger on it.

Jude Law: Mine was the TV series with Jeremy Brett. My second job on TV was in that Sherlock Holmes TV series. I played a stable boy.

Q. Jude, I gather you enjoyed shooting on some of the locations for this?
Jude Law: Oh yeah, the production designer [Sarah Greenwood] did an amazing job embellishing what were already pretty historic sites, making them look beautiful. We’d turn up every day and they’d been there two days dressing and laying stuff as the eye could see. The detail was exquisite, and it’s always fun to be out and about and film, rather than in a studio. But that goes back to what Joel [Silver] has said, the kernel of the story is a domestic drama – you see them still delving and unpicking cases on a cerebral level but also they’re out and about getting their boots dirty and their knuckles sore. It was fun… but it’s always working in the UK. I love coming home and making films here.

Read our review of Sherlock Holmes

Read our interview with Robert Downey Jr